Agriculture

Seagrass is a Key Fishing Ground Globally
November 17, 2017 11:58 AM - Stockholm University

New research demonstrates that seagrass meadows are important fishing grounds all around the globe. The work highlights that there is an urgent need to start appreciating and understanding this role to be able to build more sustainable fisheries. A study led by Dr Lina Mtwana Nordlund at Stockholm University, published in the scientific journal Fish & Fisheries, examines the global extent to which these underwater meadows support fishing activity.

Seagrass is a Key Fishing Ground Globally
November 17, 2017 11:58 AM - Stockholm University

New research demonstrates that seagrass meadows are important fishing grounds all around the globe. The work highlights that there is an urgent need to start appreciating and understanding this role to be able to build more sustainable fisheries. A study led by Dr Lina Mtwana Nordlund at Stockholm University, published in the scientific journal Fish & Fisheries, examines the global extent to which these underwater meadows support fishing activity.

Virginia Tech works to protect Africa's crops against invasive pests
November 17, 2017 08:11 AM - Virginia Tech

As invasive and indigenous insect pests continue to wreak havoc on crops across Africa, a Virginia Tech-led project is intensifying its work to coordinate a response that looks beyond geographic and financial barriers.

Stopping crop losses requires working across borders, said Muni Muniappan, director of the Virginia Tech-led Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Integrated Pest Management. “Fighting these pests in just a few of these countries is futile, because it will continue to thrive in the countries where we are not working,” he said.

Groundwater Depletion Could be Significant Source of Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide
November 16, 2017 01:03 PM - American Geophysical Union

Humans may be adding large amounts of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere by using groundwater faster than it is replenished, according to new research. This process, known as groundwater depletion, releases a significant amount of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere that has until now been overlooked by scientists in calculating carbon sources, according to the new study.

Groundwater Depletion Could be Significant Source of Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide
November 16, 2017 01:03 PM - American Geophysical Union

Humans may be adding large amounts of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere by using groundwater faster than it is replenished, according to new research. This process, known as groundwater depletion, releases a significant amount of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere that has until now been overlooked by scientists in calculating carbon sources, according to the new study.

Genomic Study Explores Evolution of Gentle 'Killer Bees' in Puerto Rico
November 16, 2017 12:51 PM - University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

A genomic study of Puerto Rico's Africanized honey bees – which are more docile than other so-called “killer bees” – reveals that they retain most of the genetic traits of their African honey bee ancestors, but that a few regions of their DNA have become more like those of European honey bees. According to the researchers, these changes likely contributed to the bees' rapid evolution toward gentleness in Puerto Rico, a change that occurred within 30 years.

Genomic Study Explores Evolution of Gentle 'Killer Bees' in Puerto Rico
November 16, 2017 12:51 PM - University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

A genomic study of Puerto Rico's Africanized honey bees – which are more docile than other so-called “killer bees” – reveals that they retain most of the genetic traits of their African honey bee ancestors, but that a few regions of their DNA have become more like those of European honey bees. According to the researchers, these changes likely contributed to the bees' rapid evolution toward gentleness in Puerto Rico, a change that occurred within 30 years.

New Research Shows: Organic Farming Can Make an Important Contribution to World Nutrition
November 16, 2017 12:03 PM - Alpen-Adria-Universit├Ąt Klagenfurt | Graz | Wien

A global conversion to organic farming can contribute to a profoundly sustainable food system, provided that it is combined with further measures, specifically with a one-third reduction of animal-based products in the human diet, less concentrated feed and less food waste. At the same time, this type of food system has extremely positive ecological effects, i.e. considerable reduction of fertilizers and pesticides, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions – and does not lead to increased land use, despite lower agricultural yields. These are the findings of a new study, which included the Vienna-based Department of Social Ecology among its contributors. Results have recently been published in “Nature Communications”.   

New Research Shows: Organic Farming Can Make an Important Contribution to World Nutrition
November 16, 2017 12:03 PM - Alpen-Adria-Universit├Ąt Klagenfurt | Graz | Wien

A global conversion to organic farming can contribute to a profoundly sustainable food system, provided that it is combined with further measures, specifically with a one-third reduction of animal-based products in the human diet, less concentrated feed and less food waste. At the same time, this type of food system has extremely positive ecological effects, i.e. considerable reduction of fertilizers and pesticides, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions – and does not lead to increased land use, despite lower agricultural yields. These are the findings of a new study, which included the Vienna-based Department of Social Ecology among its contributors. Results have recently been published in “Nature Communications”.   

How to Keep Cows Happy
November 15, 2017 11:33 AM - Springer

Corrals are used on livestock farms around the world to round up the animals when they need to be weighed or vaccinated. New research now shows that removing splashes of colors, shadows or water puddles from corrals, keeping noise levels down and not using dogs and electric prods can dramatically reduce the stress cattle experience. Maria Lúcia Pereira Lima of the Instituto de Zootecnia Sertãozinho in Brazil is the lead author of this study in Springer’s journal Tropical Animal Health and Production.

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